3 Dec
2019

Pansare murder: Maharashtra SIT to interrogate Sri Ram Sene activist Waghmore

first_imgUnravelling the Gauri Lankesh murder case The Maharashtra SIT is planning to interrogate the arrested Sri Ram Sene activist Parashuram Waghmore, prime accused in the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh, in connection with the killing of veteran communist leader Govind Pansare, said police sources.“A team of the State SIT will be going to Karnataka soon to interrogate Waghmore,” said Sanjay Kumar, additional director general (ADG), Criminal Investigation Department (CID), who is heading the SIT in the Pansare murder case.Speaking to The Hindu, Mr. Kumar, however, said that the Maharashtra SIT would not be seeking Waghmore’s custody as the suspects in both crimes [Lankesh and Pansare] were affiliated to different fringe outfits.“The suspects in our [Pansare] case and the Gauri Lankesh case belong to different groups. In the Pansare case, the suspects belong to the Sanatan Sanstha while in the latter they are associated with the Sri Ram Sene and the Hindu Yuva Sene,” he said, adding that there were two weapons used in the Pansare murder case.Also Read  Mr. Kumar further said that the Maharashtra and the Karnataka SITs had been coordinating and that the former team had even visited the neighbouring State once last month.The Karnataka SIT have yet to recover the murder weapon – a 7.65 mm bore country-made pistol – reportedly used to kill Pansare, scholar M.M. Kalburgi and Lankesh.“Since the Karnataka SIT have spoken of a connection between the two [Lankesh and Pansare] cases, the Maharashtra SIT ought to seek Waghmore’s custody. Especially, as the ballistic report says that the same weapon was used,” Megha Pansare, Pansare’s daughter-in-law, told The Hindu.Not a smooth investigationPansare, along with his wife Uma, were repeatedly shot at by motorcycle-borne assailants while returning from a morning stroll in Kolhapur’s Sagar Mal locality on February 16, 2015. While Ms. Pansare survived, the communist leader succumbed to his wounds in Mumbai’s Breach Candy Hospital on February 20.Since then, investigation into Pansare’s murder has been marred by the tardy pace of probe agencies, leading to the prime accused, Sanatan Sanstha activist Sameer Gaikwad, being granted bail.In June last year, the court, after three rejections, had accorded conditional bail to Gaikwad, who was picked up from Sangli district in western Maharashtra in September 2015 – the first arrest in the Pansare case.In January this year, the Kolhapur sessions court granted conditional bail to radical Hindutva activist Virendra Tawde in connection with his suspected role in the killing of the veteran leader.According to probe agencies, Tawde is a crucial link to the murders of both Pansare and rationalist Dr. Narendra Dabholkar. The SIT’s supplementary charge sheet even names Tawde as ‘mastermind’ in the Pansare murder, suspecting him of conducting the reconnaissance before the murder.last_img read more

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28 Nov
2019

How Sachin scored his 50 Test tons

first_imgMaster Blaster Sachin Tendulkar scored his 50th Test ton while batting against the South Africans in Centurion on Sunday.He dedicated the century to his father late Ramesh Tendulkar saying, “Yesterday was my father’s birthday. I dedicate this century to him. As for myself, I am happy and okay to have scored runs. I really don’t know how to express my feelings.”Though on the personal front “50 is just another number” for Sachin Tendulkar.Here’s how he reached the magical figureDateAgainstGroundInningsRuns9/8/1990EnglandOld Trafford2nd119*2/1/1992AustraliaSydney Cricket Ground1st148*1/2/1992AustraliaW.A.C.A. Ground1st11426/11/1992South AfricaThe Wanderers Stadium1st11111/2/1993EnglandChidambaram Stadium1st16527/07/1993Sri LankaSinhalese Sports Ground2nd104*18/01/1994Sri LankaK .D. Singh Stadium1st1421/12/1994West IndiesVidarbha Cricket Ground1st1796/6/1996EnglandEdgbaston2nd1224/7/1996EnglandTrent Bridge1st1772/1/1997South AfricaNewlands1st1692/8/1997Sri LankaPremadasa Stadium1st1439/8/1997Sri LankaSinhalese Sports Ground1st1393/12/1997Sri LankaWankhede Stadium1st1486/3/1998AustraliaChidambaram Stadium2nd155*25/03/1998AustraliaChinnaswamy Stadium1st17726/12/1998New ZealandBasin Reserve2nd11328/01/1999PakistanChidambaram Stadium2nd13624/02/1999Sri LankaSinhalese Sports Ground2nd124*10/10/1999New ZealandPunjab Cricket Stadium2nd126*29/10/1999New ZealandSardar Patel Stadium1st21726/12/1999AustraliaMelbourne Cricket Gr1st11618/11/2000ZimbabweFeroz Shah Kotla1st12225/11/2000ZimbabweVidarbha Cricket Ground1st201*18/03/2001AustraliaChidambaram Stadium1st1263/11/2001South AfricaOUTsurance Oval1st15511/12/2001EnglandSardar Patel Stadium1st10321/02/2002ZimbabweVidarbha Cricket Ground1st17619/04/2002West IndiesQueen’s Park1st11722/08/2002EnglandHeadingley1st19330/10/2002West IndiesEden Gardens2nd1762/1/2004AustraliaSydney Cricket Ground1st241*28/03/2004PakistanMultan Cricket Stad.1st194*10/12/2004BangladeshBangabandhu Stadium1st248*10/12/2005Sri LankaFeroz Shah Kotla1st10918/05/2007BangladeshZohur Ahmed Stadium1st10125/05/2007BangladeshShere Bangla Stadium1st122*2/1/2008AustraliaSydney Cricket Ground1st154*24/01/2008AustraliaAdelaide Oval1st1535/11/2008AustraliaVidarbha Cricket Stadium1st10911/12/2008EnglandChidambaram Stadium2nd103*18/03/2009New ZealandSeddon Park1st16016/11/2009Sri LankaSardar Patel Stadium2nd100*17/01/2010BangladeshZohur Ahmed Stadium1st105*24/01/2010BangladeshShere Bangla Stadium1st1436/2/2010South AfricaVidarbha Cricket Stadium2nd10014/02/2010South AfricaEden Gardens1st10626/07/2010Sri LankaSinhalese Sports Ground1st2039/10/2010AustraliaChinnaswamy Stadium1st21416/12/2010South AfricaSupersport Park2nd111** denotes Not Outadvertisementlast_img read more

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28 Nov
2019

IPL 2011: Kolkata take on unpredictable Kochi

first_imgKolkata Knight Riders will have revenge on mind when they take on the unpredictable Kochi Tuskers Kerala in their return leg IPL match in Kochi on Thursday.Kolkata lost by a six runs when the two teams squared off at the Eden Gardens on April 20 but fortunes have turned dramatically for both sides since then. While Gautam Gambhir’s Kolkata sit pretty at the top of the table after six wins and just three defeats so far, Mahela Jayawardene’s Kerala managed to end a three-match losing streak in their previous outing against Delhi Daredevils.On form, Kolkata start clear favourites with a formidable batting line-up and an equally intimidating bowling attack. Gambhir’s men have been a dominant force in the event rarely floundering.Kochi, on the other hand, have been inconsistent so far. The tournament debutants impressed by beating big teams such as the Mumbai Indians during the event but on most occasions, they have failed to click as a unit.After three straight losses, they sprung back to life by beating Delhi and skipper Mahela Jayawardene hoped it brings some consistency in his side’s performance.-With PTI inputslast_img read more

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27 Nov
2019

Sergio Aguero steals winner in Man City’s 2-0 win over Newcastle

first_imgManchester City’s Sergio Aguero celebrates after scoring the late winner against NewcastleManchester City began its Premier League title defense with a 2-0 victory over Newcastle on Sunday, with goals by David Silva and Sergio Aguero putting the champions on top of the fledgling standings.With a professional, assured start to the season, City showed at St. James’ Park why it will be tough to stop the team winning a third title in four years. Silva opened the scoring in the 38th minute with a left-foot shot inside the area past Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul, having run on to a clever backheeled pass by Edin Dzeko.Aguero began on the bench as he is short of full fitness after the World Cup but the Argentina striker quickly hit his scoring stride, slotting home a finish in injury time after his first attempt was saved by Tim Krul.”It was very important for us to start with a win,” City manager Manuel Pellegrini said. “We talked to the squad about the two ‘H’s – hungry and humble. We need both if want to continue winning titles and improve on what we did last season. We didn’t have any clean sheets in preseason but we were very solid in this game.”City’s win remained in doubt until Aguero struck, with Newcastle applying pressure late on but failing to work visiting goalkeeper Joe Hart.Substitute Ayoze Perez had a shot deflected just wide of the far post before Moussa Sissoko blazed over the bar.advertisement”I feel a little bit disappointed we have lost and the scoreline is slightly flattering to them,” Newcastle manager Alan Pardew said. “I felt if we had got an equalizer we could have gone on to win, because we looked fitter and stronger.”Our fans are good judges and I think they’ve seen enough to believe we’re going to give it a real good go this season.”Fabricio Coloccini and Vincent Kompany, the captains of the two teams, and former Sunderland goalkeeper Jimmy Montgomery laid wreaths on the center circle before kickoff in honor of two Newcastle fans who were among the 298 people to be killed when Malaysia Airlines flight 17 was shot down over Ukraine last month.There was also a minute’s silence for the two supporters, John Alder and Liam Sweeney.last_img read more

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25 Nov
2019

Jasprit Bumrah vaults to career best No. 2 spot in ICC T20I rankings

first_imgIndian medium pacer Jasprit Bumrah’s impressive show in the just-concluded series against Zimbabwe lifted him to a career-best second spot in the International Cricket Council (ICC) T20 International rankings released here on Thursday. (Also Read: Anil Kumble appointed Team India coach)Bumrah, who took five wickets in the three T20Is vaulted six places to become India’s highest ranked bowler in the shortest format after off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin slipped four places to seventh following his decision to miss the series.Bumrah now has number-one ranked Samuel Badree firmly within his sights. The West Indies wrist spinner leads Bumrah by 46 points.Bumrah’s new ball partner Barinder Sran, who finished the series as the most successful bowler with six wickets, has broken into the rankings in 225th position. (Dhoni happy with India’s bowling pool after successful Zimbabwe campaign)Among the batsmen, Mandeep Singh and Lokesh Rahul have returned to the rankings in 100th and 102nd positions respectively, while other notable movers are Manish Pandey in 152nd (up by 119 places) and Ambati Rayudu 217th (up by 133 places).Maharashtra stumper Kedar Jadhav has also vaulted 181 places to 106th after finishing the third leading run-getter with 77 runs that included a match-winning 42-ball 58 that helped India to set-up a winning score.KOHLI REMAINS NO. 1 BATSMANIndian Test skipper Virat Kohli continues to lead the batting chart in the shortest format followed by Australian Aaron Finch and New Zealander Martin Guptill at second and third respectively.In team rankings, India missed a chance to wrest back the top position despite defeating Zimbabwe by a 2-1 margin.advertisementIndia had started the series a fraction of a point behind top-placed New Zealand and needed to win the series 3-0 to perch itself at the top of the table.However, after Zimbabwe pulled off a thrilling two-run victory in the opening match of the series on Saturday, India kissed goodbye to their chances of reclaiming the number one position which it had surrendered to the Blackcaps following the annual update in May.India now have 128 points — four behind New Zealand and six ahead of reigning ICC World Twenty20 champions West Indies.last_img read more

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22 Nov
2019

NCAA Division 1 coaches headed to Manila for Gold Series Golf Camp

first_imgMANILA, Philippines—Coaches from three NCAA Division 1 schools are set to teach and even scout young golfers in the Philippines in December.Sports company DreamBig Events is bringing coaches from University of California in Los Angeles, Columbia University, and UC Berkeley for the Gold Series Golf Camp, headlined as The Road to US College Golf, from Dec. 17 to 18 at Orchard Golf & Country Club in Cavite.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Matteo Guidicelli had saved up for Sarah G’s ring since 2014? Canadian vaping study details danger from ‘popcorn lung’ chemical The camp is open to young golfers aged 12 to 18-years-old who are also invited to partake in the two-day FCG Golf Tournament.The camp is limited to 30 participants with each camper receiving personalized and customized instruction.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGreatest ever?SPORTSFormer PBA import Anthony Grundy passes away at 40SPORTSSan Miguel suspends Santos, Nabong, Tubid indefinitely after ‘tussle’ in practice“This is an exceptional opportunity for young golfers to interact with world class coaches and glimpse the future of how their game can evolve and take to places they’ve never been before,” said Akshay Maliwal, founder and CEO of DreamBig Events.“Learning under these top-caliber coaches is a privilege that only a few can experience, and to have them right here in Manila and team them is a big advantage in terms of saving on time and travel expenses.” LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Kalei Mau carries F2 Logistics past Petron for PSL Invitational crown This jewelry designer is also an architect Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles03:491.8M visitors expected at Manila North Cemetery for ‘Undas’ 201901:22Manila police chief: Cops tolerating illegal street vendors to get ax02:11Makabayan bloc defends protesting workers, tells Año to ‘shut up’03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:38‘Bato’ to be ‘most effective’ CHR head? It’s for public to decide – Gascon02:07Aquino to Filipinos: Stand up vs abuses before you suffer De Lima’s ordeal01:28Ex-President Noynoy Aquino admits contracting pneumonia00:45Aquino agrees with Drilon on SEA games ‘kaldero’ spending issue Maliwal added that these camps would give the participants early exposure to the NCAA ecosystem where an athlete could get offers from numerous schools all at once.“These camps do not just hone the young athletes’ skills, they introduce and familiarize athletes with the college recruiting process and lets them experience, even for two days, a day in the life of a college athlete at a top athletic university,” said Maliwal.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Becoming his own man DTI creates Marahuyo, a luxe Filipino fashion brand for global buyers Ethel Booba on SEA Games cauldron: ‘Sulit kung corrupt ang panggatong’ Drilon apologizes to BCDA’s Dizon over false claim on designer of P50-M ‘kaldero’ MOST READ Duterte calls himself, Go, Cayetano ‘the brightest stars’ in PH politicslast_img read more

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18 Nov
2019

I should not have gone to Rio Olympics last year, says Saina Nehwal

first_img“I should not have gone to Rio” Olympics, said Saina Nehwal, almost a year after the champion shuttler’s early exit proved to be one of the biggest upsets for the Indian contingent at the Games last year.The 27-year-old Saina’s second round defeat to unheralded Ukrainian Marija Ulitina was the lowest point for India in Rio, having entered the Games as the previous edition’s bronze medallist and a winner of multiple international tournaments.That was a year ago. Now, a rejuvenated Saina marked her return to the big league by reaching the semifinals of the World Badminton Championships in Glasgow.”Only I know what I went through. I shouldn’t have gone to Rio, I didn’t know I had a major injury. The belief of my parents and coach helped me get back. I still have tendonitis in the (right) knee,” Saina said after her quarterfinal match.Her second world championship semifinal appearance is different because she had struggled on court after returning from a career-threatening knee injury and a surgery that hampered her at Olympics last year.The 27-year-old Indian, who won a silver medal at the last edition at Jakarta, dug deep into her reservoir to eke out a 21-19 18-21 21-15 win over world No. 31 Kristy Gilmour of Scotland.”I was expecting a tough fight, but I was surprised she was playing so quick,” said Saina.”There were a lot of difficult rallies. She was pepped up and motivated, she put up a great show. I didn’t expect she would last so long in the third game.”advertisementSaina had come into the match with a 4-0 head-to-head record against the 23-year-old Scottish, but she didn’t play her in the last three years. Gilmour had meanwhile won two silver medals at the European Championship.The London Olympics bronze medallist will next play seventh seed Nozomi Okuhara of Japan, who knocked out two-time defending champion Spain’s Carolina Marin 21-18 14-21 21-15 in another match.”I wasn’t sure of a medal, I had a difficult draw. Reaching the semi-finals is a great feeling, but tomorrow will be a tough match,” Saina said.last_img read more

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24 Oct
2019

Processing of Banana Loans Begins Tomorrow

first_imgCome tomorrow (Nov.14), the People’s Cooperative (PC) Bank is slated to begin processing loan applications for the disbursement of $100 million to banana farmers ,who suffered heavy losses during the passage of Hurricane Sandy three weeks ago. Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Roger Clarke, said that the exercise will commence at the Trinity boxing plant in St Mary, one of the three banana producing parishes hardest hit. The others are Portland and St. Thomas. Speaking at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the loan facility at the Ministry’s Hope Gardens offices on Tuesday (Nov. 13), Minister Clarke, informed that the processing of loan applications for farmers in Portland will commence on Friday (Nov. 16) at the Boundbrook Wharf. The loan facility was negotiated by the Ministry with the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), which has dispatched the funds to the PC bank, for disbursement through its branches. The Ministry was able to provide $13. 5 million in subsidy, which will enable the farmers to receive the loans at a five per cent interest rate, down from the 8.5 per cent proposed by DBJ. Mr. Clarke indicated that the $100 million represents a 100 per cent increase on $50 million previously earmarked by the DBJ to finance a Ministry pilot project aimed at resuscitating the industry and stimulating the local market in the wake of significant dislocation caused by Tropical Storms Gustav and Nicole in 2008 and 2010, respectively. “We were on the verge of moving forward to see how well we could get back on track…(and) were awaiting disbursement of the funds and the implementation (of the) programme (when) Hurricane Sandy (struck). It…might (well have been)…a blessing in disguise that we did not put that $50 million programme in place earlier, because  we would have been back at square one,’ the Minister stated. He encouraged the farmers to make their applications to the PC Banks in order to access this facility, noting that they must be registered with the Rural Agricultural Development Agency (RADA) and the Banana Board. He said that the Banana Board, through its Transfer Officers, will be providing technical support to assist the farmers in preparing their loan applications. This provision, which he informed, is being underwritten by the Agricultural Credit Board (ACB) at a cost of $5 million, is to “ensure that all the protocols and standards of production are achieved to guarantee the success of this supervised loan programme”. Minister Clarke also advised that additional assessments are being conducted in St. Mary consequent on heavy flood rains, which lashed the parish over the last weekend. Jamaica’s agricultural sector sustained heavy damage and losses totalling some $1.5 billion during the passage of Hurricane Sandy on October 24, resulting in the dislocation of some 37,000 farmers.  Approximately 70 per cent of the local banana industry was impacted, with Portland, St, Thomas and St. Mary recording up to 100 per cent losses. Bananas aside, there was damage to plantains, cocoa, root crops, tubers, poultry, vegetables, and sugar cane, and Clarke disclosed that relief is also being extended to these are other sub-sectors, through RADA. These include: the distribution of fertilizer, chickens, feeds, seeds, and funding to assist with making purchases. “I think, in total, we are going to be distributing about 22,000 bags of fertilizer. We were assisted by (local fertilizer manufacturer Newport) Fersan Limited, which made a donation of about 1000 bags and we are purchasing the rest (from them). They have kindly consented to give us a discount of about eight per cent from what we are buying from them,” the Minister informed.last_img read more

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23 Oct
2019

CSP Starts Building Container Terminal at Khalifa Port

first_imgzoom China-based Cosco Shipping Ports (CSP) and port developer and operator Abu Dhabi Ports held a ground-breaking ceremony for the CSP Abu Dhabi Container Terminal at Khalifa Port on November 5.The terminal is located along the ‘Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road’ and the shipping hub of West Asia region.The parties informed that the construction and development of the terminal is expected to last some 18 months, while the operations are scheduled to start in the first quarter of 2019.In September 2016, Abu Dhabi Ports awarded a 35-year concession to Cosco Shipping Ports under which the company is to build and operate the container terminal at Khalifa Port.With an annual designed capacity of about 2.5 million TEU and backed by the large shipping fleets of Cosco Shipping, CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal “will be well placed to be a shipping hub for major international shipping companies in the Upper Gulf Region.”Image Courtesy: Cosco Shipping PortsDuring the event, the parties also signed a new agreement for the development of the largest container freight station (CFS) in the region, according to Abu Dhabi Ports.“The partnership between Abu Dhabi Ports and COSCO SHIPPING Ports to develop the region’s largest container freight station will add a new dimension to UAE/China trade relations and is fully aligned with Abu Dhabi’s Vision 2030 to drive growth, attract investment, support economic diversification and create sustainable jobs,” Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, said.“The signing of the agreement on CSP Abu Dhabi CFS project will further strengthen the services of the terminal and enhance the trade cooperation between the two countries,” Xu Lirong, Chairman of Cosco Shipping, said.last_img read more

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12 Oct
2019

Morocco Five People Arrested for Prostitution During Ramadan

Rabat- Five young Moroccans, three men and two women, were arrested in a brothel during the day yesterday.According to the Moroccan daily news outlet, Assabah, the five defendants, including a drug dealer and a pregnant woman “out of wedlock”, were arrested after a police raid on a suspected house in the Najma neighborhood in Benslimane.The first investigation reveals that one of the defendants is a 23-year old drug dealer who rents the house as a hub for illegal activities including prostitution and drug trafficking. Among items found in the suspects’ house during the police raid were thirty pieces of cannabis, five mobile phones, condoms and a hookah.The defendants are set to appear before a public prosecutor today at the court of first instance in Benslimane, about 60 kilometers from Rabat.The three men are reported to have originated from Benslimane while the two women had come to the brothel from Casablanca. The suspects are reported to have been hosting sex parties and drug deals, having been under police surveillance during this month of Ramadan, a month particularly characterized by piety and devotion to God.Edited by Marwa Al Omami© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed read more

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12 Oct
2019

Moroccos Real Estate Transactions Increased 12 in 4th Quarter of 2018

By Carolina McCabeRabat – In the fourth quarter of 2018, the Real Estate Price Index (IPAI) in Morocco fell by 0.4 percent, according to data released by Bank Al-Maghrib and the National Agency of Conservation, Land Land Records, and Cartography (ANCFCC). The fall in IPAI allowed transactions to increase by 12 percent from the third quarter of 2018. The IPAI is a statistical tool used to measure the relative change in real estate prices over time. Within the calculation, the data takes into account residential, commercial, and agricultural real estate purchases. The data from the central bank demonstrated a fall in real estate prices by 2.4 percent as well as a 1.2 percent price drop in assets for professional use. The price decrease of assets for professional use is attributed to the decline in the prices of commercial land by 0.5 percent and offices by 3.3 percent. In turn, transactions in the category grew by 18 percent, with a 17 percent increase in sales of commercial land and 31 percent in offices.At the same time, residential prices rose by 0.8 percent. The prices of apartments increased by 0.6 percent, houses by 0.8 percent, and villas by 5.9 percent. Despite higher prices, the number of transactions increased in each category as well by 15 percent, 31 percent, and 40 percent, respectively.Read Also: Morocco to Install 550 New Speed Cameras to Reduce AccidentsQuarter on quarter in 2018, the IPAI rose by around 0.3 percent, in turn causing the amount of transactions to increase by 11 percent. However, in the fourth quarter, the IPAI fell by 0.4 percent. Over the year, within cities, residential prices increased by 0.7 percent and agricultural land prices rose by 2.9 percent. However, the prices of land within the commercial sector fell by 17.4 percent.In Casablanca, residential prices fell by 0.4 percent and land prices fell by 3.2 percent. There was an increase in prices of commercial assets by 6.2 percent, and overall, sales grew by 7.4 percent.In Tangier, prices increased by 0.8 percent for residential real estate, 0.9 percent for agricultural land, and 3.4 percent for commercial land use. Attributed to an increase in apartment transactions, sales increased by 8.5 percent.In Marrakech, prices increased by 1.1 percent for residential assets and declined by 0.5 and 2.0 percent, respectively, for agricultural land and commercial land. Correlating with an increase in land sales, transactions in the region increased by 19 percent over 2018. read more

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2 Oct
2019

UN warns of hunger catastrophe for South Sudanese children

“The world should not wait for a famine to be announced while children here are dying each and every day,” said Anthony Lake, Executive Director of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). “We all have to do more, and quickly, to keep more children alive.”Mr. Lake and World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director Ertharin Cousin visited with displaced families seeking shelter at a UN base in Malakal, in the Upper Nile state of South Sudan.The agency heads said they fear a repeat of famines in other parts of the world, where early warnings of extreme hunger and escalating malnutrition went largely unheeded until official famine levels were announced.“WFP, UNICEF and our partners here on the ground have been working tirelessly to bring assistance,” said Ms. Cousin. “But if we are to rapidly expand our operations and save more lives, then we need more resources, and the international community has to act now.”Nearly one million children under five years of age in South Sudan will require treatment for acute malnutrition in 2014, according to the UN. In addition, one out of every three people in the country, the equivalent of 3.9 million people, is estimated to be dangerously food insecure.An estimated 1.5 million people have been uprooted in fighting that started with a political impasse in mid-December 2013 between President Salva Kiir and former Vice President Riek Machar.At a press briefing in Geneva, WFP spokesperson Elisabeth Byrs said that the situation was particularly worrying for displaced people who have not been able to plant crops this year.If the world fails to provide the help needed right now to accelerate and scale up life-saving food and nutrition efforts, UNICEF estimates that 50,000 children could die from malnutrition in the course of this year.In addition, the children are at further risk from insufficient health care and access to safe water and sanitation facilities, according to the UN.Also speaking out about the dire humanitarian situation was the Security Council, which expressed grave concern in a press statement about “the catastrophic food insecurity situation in South Sudan that is now the worst in the world,” as well as deep alarm that the crisis in South Sudan may soon reach the threshold of famine as a result of continued conflict, civilian targeting, and displacement. The 15-member body urged all UN Member States, who together pledged more than $618 million in new funding for both South Sudan and the region in May at the Humanitarian Pledging Conference in Oslo, to swiftly fulfill those pledges and to increase their commitments. The Council, in a separate press statement, strongly condemned the series of attacks launched on 20 July by armed youth and opposition forces, and the 23 July attacks by Government of South Sudan forces, as they fight for control of Nassir Town in Upper Nile state. “The members of the Security Council expressed deep regret at the lack of progress towards peace and reconciliation in South Sudan,” the statement added. “They reiterated their full support for the mediation efforts of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and urged all parties in South Sudan to immediately cease hostilities in accordance with the signed cessation of hostilities agreements, and to resume comprehensive and inclusive peace talks.” read more

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28 Sep
2019

2015 NBA Playoffs Preview

Derrick Rose is back in time for the playoffs. Unfortunately for the Bulls, he’s not the Derrick Rose of four seasons ago, the one who won the MVP award and led the Bulls to their only conference finals since Michael Jordan’s second retirement. Since then, Rose, slowed by injuries, has played just 100 regular-season games and one playoff game. Now he is the only Bulls starter who rates below league average. That’s not enough to make Milwaukee the favorite in this series. Two Bucks starters are below league average, and Milwaukee will have trouble scoring with an offense that is well below league average. The Bulls should win this series — and enjoy the win, because in half of our simulations of the playoffs, they go out in the next round, most likely to LeBron James and the Cavs. — Carl Bialik Western ConferenceEach team is led by one of the best players in basketball: Stephen Curry on Golden State and Anthony Davis on New Orleans. So why do we think Golden State has a 92 percent chance to advance? Because Curry is better, and has much better teammates. Draymond Green, a top contender for Defensive Player of the Year, rates higher than Davis in the Real Plus-Minus player ratings we’re using from Jeremias Engelmann and Steve Ilardi. Warriors sub Andre Iguodala would be the second-best Pelican. But this might not be a sweep: In their two games against Golden State in New Orleans, the Pelicans won once and forced overtime in the other. But Golden State’s formidable offense should dominate the Pelicans’ subpar D. The Warriors look a lot more like a team for the ages — with an impressive 48 percent chance of winning it all — than like first-round upset fodder. (We were a little stunned by that 48 percent number, but Basketball-Reference.com gives the Warriors about the same odds.) — Carl Bialik You might think the Celtics should just be happy to be here. After all, in late February, they only had a 12 percent probability of making the playoffs, according to the FiveThirtyEight NBA Power Ratings. But rather than merely showing up, getting their souvenir T-shirt and accepting a first-round loss, Boston could give LeBron James and the mighty Cavaliers more trouble than they bargained for. While we can’t derive much meaning from the Celtics’ combined 216-168 margin over Cleveland in their two April matchups — the Cavs were mostly resting their key players — Boston is solid at both ends of the floor, with a great group of guards and a lot of depth. Over the course of the entire season, they were better offensively (relative to the league) than the Cavs’ defense was, and that only includes a few months of Isaiah Thomas. Our model says the Celtics are still unlikely to pull the upset, but they have the ingredients to be much more of a pest than they seemed to be a few months ago. — Neil Paine Portland won fewer games than Memphis (51 to 55) during the regular season, but because the Blazers won the comparatively weak Northwest division, they are the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference and the Grizzlies are the No. 5. But that seed advantage isn’t worth much. Since the Blazers had fewer wins, they will still be on the road for four of their seven potential games against Memphis. Making matters even more complicated, this series is so close that the question of home court could end up making all the difference. Only a tenth of a rating point separates them in our most recent power rankings. Our model gives the Grizzlies a 54 percent probability of winning, but that number would flip around to 53 percent for Portland if the Blazers had home court. Of course, the Grizzlies earned their home-court advantage by winning more games (against a tougher schedule, no less), and this arrangement is good for Portland, too — a 46 percent chance against Memphis is preferable to a 24 percent chance versus the Clippers, which is who they’d face if the conference were seeded purely by record. But this inverted 4-versus-5 matchup is another example of how convoluted and arbitrary the seeding process is in the NBA. And it’s another argument that the league should perhaps just ditch divisions (if not conferences) entirely. — Neil Paine With the latest FiveThirtyEight Power Ratings ranking the Spurs and Clippers as second and fourth, respectively, this matchup is one of the most compelling first-round matchups in recent memory.The defending champion Spurs enter this tournament as the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference — far lower than the No. 2 seed they could have had if they had won their final game against the Pelicans on Wednesday. Despite that loss, they had a 21-4 record over their last 25 games, reasserting that they’re contenders despite a 19-18 stretch in the middle of the season.The story of their year has been the breakout of last year’s surprise finals MVP and zero-time All-Star Kawhi Leonard. The Spurs went 46-18 with him in the lineup, with an average margin of victory of 7.8 points per game — which would be second to Golden State’s 10.0 and matches the 7.8 they put up last year. Leonard’s 2014-15 Real Plus-Minus of 8.35 was second in basketball behind Stephen Curry’s, ahead of well-known small forward LeBron James’s. Oh, and he led the league in steals per game.The Clippers are no slouches, either — their SRS3SRS is a team’s margin of victory, adjusted for its strength of schedule. of 6.8 is second-highest in the league behind Golden State’s 10.0 (San Antonio is third, with 6.34). They’ve now won either 56 or 57 games in every full season of the Chris Paul/Blake Griffin era, yet their dynamic duo has not made it past the conference semifinals.Although the Clippers have home-court advantage, the FiveThirtyEight simulations give the Spurs the edge, with a 53 percent chance of advancing. In fact, despite being projected to play any Game 7 from here on out on the road, San Antonio has the third-best chance of winning the championship, at 12 percent. The model gives the Clippers the fourth-best chance, at 8 percent. — Benjamin Morris It’s current MVP contender versus aging MVP winner (but the current contender is the one with the beard). James Harden versus Dirk Nowitzki. The Beard led the league in WAR, according to ESPN’s Real Plus-Minus metrics. With Harden, Houston has the edge — a 66 percent chance of prevailing, according to FiveThirtyEight’s projections. Beyond Harden’s consistency, the Rockets have otherwise ridden the injury luck roller coaster. They enter the playoffs having lost two important starters: versatile big man Donatas Motiejunas and the feisty defender Patrick Beverley at the point. On the other hand, Dwight Howard has returned after missing half the season. The Rockets will need him to maintain their solid +3.2 defensive rating.For the Mavs, it’s been a tale of two seasons. After surprising the league with a hot start, Dallas stagnated after the All-Star break, going 14-13. In FiveThirtyEight’s latest NBA Power Ratings, the Mavs rated as the worst of the Western Conference teams to make the playoffs — even behind the No. 8 seed New Orleans Pelicans. — Andrew Flowers The NBA playoffs are finally upon us, and like the 16 teams vying for the Larry O’Brien trophy, we’ve come prepared — not with basketball skills, mind you,1We shudder to think about what the advanced metrics would say about a FiveThirtyEight pickup team. but with graphics and numbers. Using the latest (postseason-optimized) version of FiveThirtyEight’s NBA Power Ratings, we simulated the playoff bracket 10,000 times, counting how often each team won its first-round series (as well as tracking which teams won the NBA title most often). We also put together charts highlighting each team’s key players, along with their multiyear predictive Real Plus-Minus2This is a slightly different statistic than the RPM you can find at ESPN.com because it uses data from seasons prior to 2014-15. We like the multiyear version because, among individual player statistics, it is the best predictor of future team outcomes. ratings, plus a comparison of both teams’ strengths and weaknesses according to the four factors of basketball. (Note that in some of our write-ups below, we use single-season RPM, so those numbers will be slightly different than the multiyear RPM we list in the charts.) So get settled in, maybe throw some chalk in the air, and enjoy the brutal, glorious two-month journey that is the road to the NBA championship. Eastern ConferenceThe Brooklyn Nets will not win the NBA championship. No, really: We ran 10,000 simulations of the playoffs, and the Nets were the only team to never win it all. They have only a 10 percent chance of moving on from their first-round series against the Atlanta Hawks. This is among the most lopsided matchups of the first round. The Nets, ranked No. 22 in FiveThirtyEight’s Power Ratings, are by far the worst team to make the postseason. With their 38-44 record and -2.9 point differential (the only playoff team in red), the Nets are lucky they’re in the Eastern Conference — further momentum for reform to the NBA’s postseason structure.Atlanta is coming off a franchise-record 60-win regular season; this should be a cakewalk for the Hawks (even after losing defensive stalwart Thabo Sefolosha to injury after a run-in with the NYPD). Atlanta is well-balanced: +2.9 points per 100 possessions on offense and +2.0 on defense. The Nets have a pedestrian offense (+1.1) but are a disaster on defense: At -4.7, their defensive rating is the fifth-worst in the league. If the Nets avoid a sweep, it’ll be an achievement. — Andrew Flowers This series features two teams that started out the season looking like they might be the next big thing (at least in the Eastern Conference). The fourth-seeded Toronto Raptors began the season 7-1 and made it all the way to 24-7 before a four-game losing streak started their 25-26 finish — with their final record only a one-win improvement on last year. The Wizards started out 4-1 and made it to 19-6, but have been 27-30 since, ultimately improving on last season’s 44-win campaign by just two wins.Both teams are led by All-Star point guards, Toronto’s Kyle Lowry and Washington’s John Wall, with Lowry making the All-Star team for the first time in the eighth year of his career (his third with the Raptors). ESPN’s Real Plus-Minus for this season ranks them as the fourth- and sixth-best point guards in 2015. Lowry performed a little worse than last year; his RPM dipped slightly from 4.3 to 4.1 and his WAR (wins above replacement) dipped from 11.6 to 9.4. But for Wall, 2014-15 was a big improvement on the year before: His 4.7 RPM and 12.1 WAR were both up from 2.2 and 8.3 last year, respectively.The FiveThirtyEight simulations give the Raptors a 60 percent chance of winning this series but don’t see either team as a championship contender. They give the Raptors a 1 percent chance of winning the title and the Wizards an even smaller chance. In the 10,000 simulations we ran, the Raptors or Wizards won the championship only 108 times, the fewest of any of the eight first-round matchups. — Benjamin Morris read more

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28 Sep
2019

Ohio State womens basketball blown out ousted from Sweet 16 by Tennessee

OSU senior guard Ameryst Alston (14) dribbles the ball during a game against Wagner on Nov. 22 at St. John Arena. Credit: Elizabeth Tzagournis | Lantern PhotographerThe last time the Tennessee and Ohio State women’s basketball teams met before Friday was in the 2011 NCAA Sweet 16 round. Fast forward five years to Friday night, and the two had a rematch in that very same rebound.The No. 7 seed Lady Vols were not the favorite coming into the matchup with the Buckeyes in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, but they disregarded the predictions from analysts and dominated the third-seeded Buckeyes 78-62.Tennessee came out of the gates strong and played with efficiency, taking quality shots from all areas of the court. Redshirt sophomore guard Diamond DeShields left the game for a stint with an injury, but would later return to contribute an all-around performance to the Lady Vols’ success.Tennessee took control of the contest in the first half by breaking the press with ease and using its height in the paint to its advantage.Tennessee’s post play was led by redshirt sophomore center Mercedes Russell who went a perfect 6-of-6 from the field, taking over the OSU forwards. The Springfield, Oregon, native showed poise on the block with her effortless post moves and displayed her clean shooting form, putting the ball through the nylon throughout the evening.Along with Russell’s success, senior forward Bashaara Graves also didn’t miss a shot in the first half, shooting 5-of-5.OSU, on the other hand, was far from perfect, struggling to get an offensive flow in the first 20 minutes of play. Only shooting 25 percent as a team in the first quarter, the Buckeyes had to find a solution to their offense if they wanted to keep it close going into the locker room.Missing their lead defender, senior guard Cait Craft, to a season-ending hand injury, the Buckeyes didn’t have a player to turn to shut down the Volunteers scorers.Senior guard Ameryst Alston, who has been struggling to perform because of a wrist injury suffered in the Big Ten tournament, did not want her senior year to end earlier than it had to be, ignoring the wrist pain and completing some of the acrobatic shots that she regularly converted before the injury.Sophomore guard Kelsey Mitchell took matters into her own hands for the rest of the first half, knocking down a slew of 3-pointers and finishing the half with 11 points.Even though OSU trailed after the first half of play, the Buckeyes did not show the urgency that they needed to catch up to the Lady Vols. OSU ignored the offensive strategy that it typically followed throughout the year and lacked energy on defense, putting the Scarlet and Gray in even more of a hole as the second half of play got underway.Tennessee’s offensive movement continued to be pristine and showed shades of coach Pat Summitt’s rosters back in the day. The Buckeyes simply had no answer for Tennessee and were unable to enforce their high-velocity pace that has been their go-to all season long.Russell would go on to score a game high 25 points and grab 14 rebounds, while Graves finished with 14 points and nine boards.Despite her injury, DeShields ended her night with 10 points and dished out seven assists, while grabbing five rebounds as well.On the Scarlet and Gray side, Alston led the Buckeyes with 21 points, ending her collegiate career on a strong note. Mitchell would follow her with 20 points, though she shot just 5-of-15 from the field.With the loss, the Buckeyes will board the plane back home to Columbus to begin their offseason, while the Lady Vols are set to continue to the Elite Eight to take on Syracuse and compete for a chance to make it to the Final Four. read more

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28 Sep
2019

Lavenders career day leads OSU to comeback championship

With the clock ticking toward zero and the game in the balance, the No. 10 Ohio State women’s basketball team had a decision to make.Needing a basket to win the Big Ten Tournament Championship, who takes the last shot for the Buckeyes?The decision wasn’t too difficult to make. Center Jantel Lavender drew a foul and nailed a pair of free throws with 1.9 seconds remaining to propel the Bucks (30-4) over Iowa (19-13) with a 66-64 victory and into the Big Ten Tournament title Sunday in Indianapolis.Lavender was firing on all cylinders against the Hawkeyes, scoring 35 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.She scored 23 of OSU’s 33 points in the second half, when the Buckeyes made a furious comeback, rallying from a 49-33 deficit to eventually tie the game at 60-60 with five minutes to play.The junior center from Cleveland, Ohio, made 14 of her 25 shot attempts and all seven attempts at the free throw line.The teams arrived at the championship bout on completely different paths.Ohio State won the regular season championship, its sixth in a row, with four games remaining on its conference slate.At 10-8, Iowa finished five games behind the Buckeyes in the final regular season standings. But the Hawkeyes beat Penn State 82-75 and upset No. 23 Michigan State 59-54 to reach the title game.It appeared they would finish off their Big Ten blindsiding when they jumped out to the 16-point advantage, but Lavender’s relentless effort in the post earned OSU its second consecutive conference tournament title and an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. read more

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21 Sep
2019

Study finds you can fight fires with electricity

first_imgAs the saying goes you should fight fire with fire. Researchers from Harvard University have found that the saying should actually be that you should fight fire with electricity. The discovery, which was presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS), could open up a whole new genre of fire-fighting devices to compliment foam, powder and other substances used by firefighters today. The discovery is based on an observation which is over 200-years-old that found electricity can affect the shape of flames and even put them out.The study was conducted by Ludovico Cademartiri, Ph.D., and his colleagues in the group of George M. Whitesides, Ph.D. at Harvard University, and funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency under the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Energy. It found that when they connected a 600-watt electrical amplifier to a wand-like probe they were able to shoot beams of electricity capable of putting out a flame more than a foot high time and time again.The 600-watt amplifier has about the same power as a high-end car stereo system, but Cademartiri believes only a tenth of the wattage is needed to suppress flames meaning a portable electrical device could be made. Such a device wouldn’t be practical for large fires like forest fires, but would be valuable fighting fires in enclosed spaces such as those on armored trucks, planes, and submarines. It could also create paths for firefighters to enter a blaze and to establish an escape path for people.The electricity works on the fire by charging soot or carbon particles within the flames so that they respond to an electric field. This allows the heat and the distribution of flames to be controlled. For this reason, it is believed the technology not only has implications on fire fighting, but could improve the efficiency of other technologies including car engines, power plants, welding and cutting torches.Read more at the ACS press releaseBrian’s OpinionTalk about a futuristic way to put out fires. Just imagine seeing a firefighter pull out a wand to shoot beams of electricity in front of them acting like a shield to push flames out of his or her path. Also, think of what this might mean for fire suppression devices used in buildings and submarines.As we all know, water sprinklers can be valuable for putting out flames, but the trade off is that water also ends up damaging everything it falls on. A beam of electricity would be less destructive, though it probably wouldn’t be the best thing for data-centers or personal computers. In fairness, neither is water, but at least only electrical equipment would be damaged using electricity.It’s amazing to think this technique has been known about for over 200 years. Unfortunately, it has taken that long for researchers to look into what could be done with the knowledge. Now we know it may not be too much longer before we equip firefighters with their own kind of light-saber to fight fires.last_img read more

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21 Sep
2019

Geek deals Alienware X51 gaming PC 115 IPS monitor more

first_img2013 is going to be an interesting year for the gaming industry. The current Xbox and Playstation consoles are quite long in the tooth, with replacements due later this year. Meanwhile, PC gaming seems to be facing both ups and downs; PC gaming technology and the overall experience as better than ever, but development of the AAA gaming titles seems to be focused on the consoles.While we wait with baited breath to see how the gaming industry plays out over the next couple years, home entertainment has decidedly swung over to the land of the PC. Many people are eschewing traditional cable or satellite services for a PC-powered entertainment system that provides content exclusively via web streaming. Alienware’s X51 is one of the more impressive designs that offers a compact, living-friendly design combined with respectable gaming performance.The chassis is sized similar to the Xbox 360 or Playstation 3, with a sleek black paint job and more subtle design cues than some of the other Alienware products. The only thing that clues you in to the fact that this isn’t a boring old cable box or Playstation is the extraterrestrial Alienware logo on the face of the machine.Packed inside the roughly 1 foot square chassis is a 3rd gen (Ivy Bridge) Core i7 quad-core processor, offering more than enough performance for your web and video needs. Ensuring everything from HD video to your latest frag session are rendered with crisp, beautiful pixels is an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 1.5GB graphics card.The GTX 660 isn’t your average desktop PC graphics card. This is a high performance piece of kit that will throw Battlefield 3 up on your HDTV in Full HD 1080p glory without a hiccup. The optical drive is a slot-loading Blu-ray model, making this deal the perfect opportunity to replace nearly every piece of equipment in your home theater setup with a single X51 — it’s gaming, video, and PC all in one.Rounding out this well-loaded machine is 8GB of DDR3 RAM, a 2 Terabyte hard drive, and all the usual standard features we’ve come to expect (USB 3.0, HDMI, Wireless-N, etc). You even get 1 year of in-home warranty service included at no extra cost. This beastly little machine normally runs $1,349 and we have only seen a couple discounts on loaded, high-end models like this, so be sure to snatch this up before it disappears. You even get 10% off any upgrades you make during customization of this machine when placing your order.Alienware X51 Core i7 mini Gaming PC w/ GeForce GTX 660, Blu-ray for $1099 + free shipping (reg. $1,349 | ends Feb. 14 or sooner) Our other top deals:HP Pavilion 20xi 20-inch 1600×900 IPS LED-backlit LCD Monitor for $114.99 + free shipping (reg. $129.99 | use coupon 15LOGICBUY)Asus 32GB Transformer Pad Infinity TF700T 10.1-inch Tablet for $438 + free shipping (reg. $478)HTC One VX 4.5-inch 4G LTE Smartphone (Red) [AT&T] for $0.99 + free overnight shipping w/ 2 year contract (reg. $49.99)last_img read more

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18 Sep
2019

Darren Moore defends Rodriguez after controversial equalizer

first_imgWest Bromwich Albion manager Darren Moore has come to the defence of Jay Rodriguez following his controversial equalizer against Aston Villa.Rodriguez appeared to handle the ball en route to scoring the last goal of the game as West Brom played out a 2-2 draw with Aston Villa, but Moore isn’t the former England international didn’t do intentionally.“He said the ball had hit his arm, but he didn’t know much about it because he threw himself at it,” Moore said, according to Birmingham Mail.“To see it go in at the end I was really pleased. I didn’t think we deserved to lose the game with the commitment we put in.”“It had all the ingredients of a local derby.”There was a tone of swings when Moore was asked about conceding a late goal of such nature and he replied by referencing Brentford’s equaliser at the end of a game against West Brom.BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MAY 11: Dwight Gayle of West Bromwich Albion celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Sky Bet Championship Play-off semi final first leg match between Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion at Villa Park on May 11, 2019 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Paul Harding/Getty Images)West Bromwich coach believes Gayle’s absence will hurt his team Manuel R. Medina – May 13, 2019 The on-loan striker scored 24 goals during the 2018-2019 English Championship season but will miss the rest of the campaign.“There was a goal on Monday night I was cheesed off with,” he said.“What I was happy with was how the boys kept going.”“I was pleased because we had two days less to prepare for the game.”“As the game wore on, we needed to get our noses in front because I thought the boys might run out of steam.”“You’re never happy to concede a goal so I’d imagine Dean’s not very happy about it.”“Although it wasn’t a win, to score as late as that in a game of that magnitude it certainly feels like it.”last_img read more

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